Roadworks set to take place ahead of major repairs to Heworth roundabout will start next week.
Works on the Felling bypass between Whitemare Pool and Heworth roundabout are set to begin on Tuesday, October 10.
The dual carriageway will be reduced to a single lane in each direction to allow crash barriers on the verge to be replaced and new lighting to be installed.
Crash barriers will also be installed in the central reservation to protect against cross-over accidents.
These ancillary works are being carried out ahead of major structural repairs to Heworth roundabout, expected to last up to six months.
A start date for this scheme has not yet been announced - but it is now expected not to be until 2018.
Anneliese Hutchinson, service director for Development, Transport and Public Protection at Gateshead Council said: “There has been a lot of discussion around whether we begin these ancillary works before the main works on the roundabout begin. It’s been a complicated decision because starting these works early will create some peak-time congestion.
“We had originally intended to carry out these works while the main roundabout works were taking place to get all of the pain over with in one go. However, we’ve taken another look and we now think that by completing these works first we might be able to maintain two lanes in each direction for longer while the roundabout works are being carried out.
“This will obviously help to keep traffic moving through the roadworks site and reduce overall congestion on the bypass.
“We are still awaiting approval from Network Rail for the works at Heworth Roundabout to begin. However, it’s looking increasingly likely that work on the roundabout, and the temporary closure of Shields Road, will not now get underway until the New Year.
“We’ll be keeping drivers and residents advised in the weeks ahead and as soon as we have a confirmed start date we’ll be publicising this widely.”
Heworth roundabout is built on a series of bridges over the Network Rail and Metro lines. Structural engineers detected water seeping into the bridge structures.
If left unchecked, this water could cause serious and irreparable structural damage to the bridges.
The repair works will involve the complete removal of the road surface to allow the bridge decks to be waterproofed and a new road surface then applied.